By Olena Nazarenko
When the ears of Tech students become exposed to the word “Stuyvesant”, the result is usually a scoff. Though some disappointed freshmen, having failed to get into their first-choice school, may yet harbor a soft spot for Stuy, most Technites have assimilated into the “anti-Stuy” crowd of Tech students.
But why the rivalry? And when did it begin?
To find out, it may be necessary to look beyond superficial accusations and dig deeper into the history of the two competitive institutions.
Both Brooklyn Tech and Stuyvesant are Specialized High Schools in NYC, which means they select prospective students based on an admissions test. While Stuyvesant may be the more popular first choice for a lot of students, Brooklyn Tech offers something Stuy fails to provide: a very large student body.
With over 5,000 students, Tech boasts student diversity and the semblance of a college. Stuyvesant also offers a college experience with similar opportunities for taking college-level courses, but compared to the 1,300 students accepted each year at Tech, only 800 or so are accepted at Stuy, making the latter a school fairly more difficult to get into.
But both schools have outstanding reputations. Competition amongst the best seems reasonable.
In fact, according to Stephen Gigliello, coach of the boys’ basketball varsity team, the competition is not only understandable—it’s beneficial.
He claims, “I think it’s great. It bring out school pride. We’ve played the game every year (alternating sites) for the past 6 years! My players and Tech’s student body always looks forward to the Tech vs. Stuy game.”
Looks like Tech vs. Stuy competition is vital, enjoyable part of basketball. But does everyone enjoy these perks of Tech vs Stuy competition?
“Honestly, I don’t see the rivalry,” says Hannah Wong ‘16, a member of the chess club. “From my own point of view we do stuff for ourselves (in chess club)… we aren’t motivated by competition … we just do things if we want to and if we need to.”
Seems like chess club doesn’t care about topping Stuy—no anti-Stuy-ism there!
So where can we find it? Isn’t there some Technite who really, really hates Stuy? Apparently, there is.
“Stuy is better,” says Graham Nelson ‘16, with a massive smirk. “They all dress so posh, like they think they’re better than everyone else. A Tech kid usually wears whatever: t-shirt, sweatshirt… But a Stuy kid sits on the train in a sweater and dress pants like he’s going to a ball or something.”
Perhaps there is no simple answer to what exactly the Tech vs. Stuy relationship resembles. It’s certainly not all negative, but it surely contains quite a bit of rivalry.